The annual operating budget gives Apex town officials the authority to collect revenue and make expenditures, depending on the priorities of the council, community, and staff.
The budget for Fiscal Year 2022-2023 was adopted by Town Council on June 14, 2022. View the full budget document.
- Total budget (all funds): $178,064,800
- General Fund: $91,201,500
- Electric Fund: $47,666,000
- Water & Sewer Fund: $26,664,100
- Non-major & Capital Fund: $12,533,200
- Property tax rate: $.41 per $100 valuation, an increase of $.02 from last year
- Garbage, recycling, and yard waste services fees increase by $0.24/month
- Electric rate: Base rate increase from $15.05 to $25.00, kWh charge decrease of 8.5%
- Water rates: Water base rate increase of $0.46, volumetric rate increase of 1.5%
- Sewer rate: Sewer base rate increase of $0.71, volumetric increase of 4%
In preparing the FY22-23 budget, town staff followed guidance from Town Council’s strategic goals to develop a proactive budget that will balance improving current town programs and services with development of new programs and projects.
High Performing Government
Deliver exceptional service, valuing an engaged workforce with an emphasis on efficiency, collaboration, innovation, and inclusion.
Budget Items Related to this Goal:
- Addition of 50 new positions across all departments
- Implementation of pay scale & classification plan and other compensation
- Finalize Strategic Plan and begin departmental business plans
- Develop diversity inclusion belonging program
Improve and sustain an environment that invites and retains a diversity of residents, employment opportunities, and businesses.
Budget Items Related to this Goal:
- Implement the Downtown Master Plan
- Salem Street Downtown Projects
- Downtown Coworking Station
- Downtown Façade Grant Program
- Downtown Development Promotion and Marketing
- Economic Development Incentives
Create a safe and welcoming environment fostering community connections and high-quality recreational and cultural experiences supporting a sense of belonging.
Budget Items Related to this Goal:
- Complete Greenway Connections
- Ragan Road sidepath feasibility study
- Annual greenway allocation
- Beaver Creek Greenway improvements
- Encourage a healthy and active lifestyle
- Hunter Street bike track
- Ensure safe places and spaces
- Firing range for Police qualifications and training
- Vision Zero initiative
- Institute Mayor internship / engagement program
Encourage equitable and sustainable development that provides accessibility and connectivity throughout the community.
Budget Items Related to this Goal:
- Support diverse housing options (allocation to affordable housing fund)
- Provide and promote mobility
- Downtown Redevelopment Plan
- Implement Phase 1 of wayfinding plan & install signage
- Transit program
- NCDOT S-Line Raise grant
- Downtown interim bus stop (GoTriangle) enhancements
- Focus on infrastructure improvements
- Complete pavement condition survey to prioritize roadwork
- Evans Street sidewalk repair
- Annual misc. sidewalk improvements
Commit to sustaining natural resources and environmental well-being.
Budget Items Related to this Goal:
- Be a leader in renewable energy & conservation
- Electric & hybrid fleet replacements & additions
- Complete Sustainability Action Plan with implementation timeline
- Complete climate vulnerability assessment
- Implement green initiatives in Town facilities
- Urban forestry internship program
- Plant the Peak program
Major Projects / Expenditures
For more information, view the Town of Apex Capital Improvement Projects document which shows a yearly outline of current capital improvement projects.
Annual Pavement Management – Street Resurfacing ($2,000,000)
The town is responsible for maintaining over 220 miles of municipal streets with the annual resurfacing contract providing for most of the pavement maintenance needs. Street mileage is growing annually with ongoing development. This annual program addresses deficiencies in pavement condition throughout Apex to prevent issues such as potholes, alligator cracking, and rutting in order to provide a safe and reliable transportation system. The Powell Bill program provides an annual funding allocation from the state based on public centerline miles of road accepted and maintained by the town. Current and future resurfacing costs continue to exceed Powell Bill allocations. The proposed bond referendum includes $5.0 million to address a backlog of pavement management projects.
GPS Emergency Vehicle Preemption ($260,000)
In the first year, this project includes installing GPS preempt in 10 traffic signals and outfitting all fire vehicles with GPS preempt capability. Emergency vehicle preemption is designed to give emergency response vehicles a green light on their approach to a signalized intersection while providing a red light to conflicting approaches. Existing infrared preemption is only available for certain directions at four signals town wide and the Apex Fire Department no longer has infrared emitters.
Justice Heights Street Extension ($250,000)
This project includes extending Justice Heights Street from its existing stub west of South Salem Street to intersect with the Apex Peakway and includes sidewalk on the north side of the street. The project would improve local connectivity for traffic flow south of NC 55 and pedestrian connectivity between Salem Street and Apex Peakway through the Justice Heights neighborhood. The FY22-23 Recommended Budget includes $250,000 for study and design.
Felton Grove High School Road Improvements Cost Share ($500,000)
This project will contribute funds toward offsite intersection improvements as part of the construction of proposed Felton Grove High School that are beyond the required improvements for Wake County Public School System (WCPSS). This project addresses capacity and safety issues at multiple access points to the school. Funding is being prioritized ahead of construction in order to enter into an agreement with the school with full payment in 2025.
Ragan Road Sidepath ($200,000)
This project includes creating a connection from the current end of the Ragan Road sidepath to the American Tobacco Trail. Currently, there is no public access along Ragan Road to the American Tobacco Trail. Initial funding is for study and design.
Safe Routes to School ($1,710,000)
The town annually budgets for Safe Routes to School (SRTS) projects to improve and add to existing town infrastructure related to pedestrian and bicycle traffic to and from schools. A portion of the 2021 transportation bonds are dedicated to SRTS projects. The FY22-23 Budget includes funding for Downtown Apex Safe Routes to School and transit connections, construction of a high-priority SRTS project serving Thales Academy, sidewalk along the east side of N. Salem Street from north of Apex Peakway to Peak United Methodist Church, design of a high priority SRTS project serving Apex Middle School, sidewalk along N. Hughes Street from E. Chatham Street to Apex Community Center, and sidewalk along S. Mason Street from E. Moore Street to E. Chatham Street.
Tingen Road Pedestrian Bridge ($150,000)
This allocation is for the study of a pedestrian bridge over the railroad crossing of Tingen Road. The current at-grade railroad crossing will be closed as part of the Apex Peakway Southwest Connector project per the agreement with CSX. A pedestrian bridge will provide members of the community a safe way to cross the railroad tracks on Tingen Road to access downtown Apex, multi-family residential developments, multiple churches, and Apex Elementary School. A feasibility study will determine more accurate scope and cost.
Wayfinding Signage Fabrication & Installation ($320,000)
This project includes fabrication and installation of Wayfinding signage throughout town. Sign types include parking directional, vehicular directional, pedestrian directional, destination identification, and gateway signage. This project was identified as part of the Downtown Plan & Parking Study and is an extension of the Community Branding Study.
Parks, Recreation, and Cultural Resources
Annual Greenway Allocation ($300,000)
This is a new, ongoing program to allow for the study, prioritization, and design of proposed greenway connections. This program is a direct response to increasing greenway request from residents and Town Council.
Beaver Creek Greenway Improvements ($650,000)
This project will relocate, replace, and rebuild a section of greenway that is flooding/holding standing water on Beaver Creek Greenway. Improvements include repair of shoulder and trail surface from Jaycee Park to Kelly Road Park as identified in engineered analysis inventory. This study prioritized maintenance and repair for safety and user experience. Installation of boardwalk near Kelvington Court to address flooding in wetland area.
Hunter Street Bike Track ($225,000)
This project includes the construction of a bike track on recently acquired vacant land, at the north end of the park. Bike track to consist of natural surfaces with obstacles, mounds, and other features to allow for off road biking challenges, similar to mountain biking facilities but in circular track route. No additional parking will be added. An accessible route will link to the new facility.
Smart Grid Meters & Load Control ($1,000,000)
This project provides an end-to-end solution for wireless smart grid and advanced metering. It will provide the ability to manage and monitor our electrical service customers by utilizing high speed, standards-based communications to access real-time data. In addition to advanced metering, this project will also provide updated load control devices, thermostats, and street light control hardware. The software provides meter data, network, load control, streetlight, and outage and customer portal management all in one easy to use platform.
Water & Sewer
Beaver Creek Commons Gravity Sewer Extension ($1,400,000)
Recent development projects near Kelly Road have upgraded and extended gravity sewer from the Abbington Subdivision to I-540. Currently, there is a gap between I-540 and the Beaver Creek Crossings Pump Station. The land between is part of a large lot subdivision (Chapel Ridge) with little potential for redevelopment. This project would involve decommissioning the Beaver Creek Crossings Pump Station and constructing approximately 2,100 feet of 12-inch gravity sewer line and manholes to complete the system. Not funding this project will require continued maintenance of the pump station. Project also includes looping a dead-end 12-inch water main along Beaver Creek Commons Drive from Beaver Creek to Kelly Road. If not constructed, redundancy and improved transmission to town's elevated tanks will not be realized. Increased flushing of water may be required in the dead-end 12-inch water line to maintain water quality.
Big Branch 2 Pump Station & Force Main ($1,000,000)
This project includes construction of Big Branch Pump Station (capacity of 3 million gallons per day) and approximately six miles of 30-inch force main that will discharge at the Western Wake Regional WRF. This infrastructure is needed to serve the Big Branch Basin, which is generally located in the triangle between I-540, US 1, and NC 55.
Humie Olive Water Loop ($150,000)
This project will add approx. 7,000 linear feet of 12-inch water main along Humie Olive and New Hill Olive Chapel Road to complete a full 12-inch loop in this area. This loop will provide better water quality and fire protection capabilities to this section of the service area.
Middle Creek - Sunset Hills Pump Station Renovation ($3,510,000)
This project includes the renovation of the existing Middle Creek - Sunset Hills Pump Station, installing a new deeper wetwell that will allow the pump station to serve the area to the northeast including the future school site. Pumps will be updated to carry the additional area and to meet the new pumping characteristics to the new Middle Creek Regional Pump Station. If this work is not completed, the area to the northeast will have to have its own separate pump station, which is not in the town's best long-term interest.
Western Transmission Main – Phase III ($2,100,000)
Phase III of the Western Transmission Main Project will be the final phase of this project. The project includes the following sections: 900 feet of 20-inch waterline on Salem Street from Apex BBQ Road to the Peakway, and 3,000 feet of 20-inch waterline on Old US 1 from West Village to Holland Road. The primary purpose of Phase III work is to provide adequate water flow at a manageable pressure to the entire water system as western portions of Apex, south of Olive Chapel Road, develop and demand grows. This work will also ensure that adequate flow and proper velocities are maintained in the other areas of Apex as growing demand to the west pulls water in that direction.
You might consider the annual operating budget to be the town’s most important work product. It gives Apex town officials the authority to collect revenue and make expenditures, depending on the priorities of the council, staff, and community.
By June 30 each year, the council is required by state law to approve the budget for the coming fiscal year (July 1 - June 30). Staff begins estimating revenues and expenses for the coming year, and seeks public input beginning in January. Generally by May, the Manager has a draft budget complete for Council’s review and public comment.
Typically, the General Fund includes services that cannot be operated as a business enterprise and rely on tax dollars as their primary source of revenue. Most of the town’s General Fund revenues come from ad valorem (property) tax, and State-collected revenue (such as the state sales tax), permits & fees, restricted & unrestricted intergovernmental revenues, fund balance allocation and miscellaneous revenues.
The Town of Apex operates two major funds as enterprises - the Electric Fund and the Water and Sewer Fund. Enterprise funds operate similar to a business and are self-sustaining with user rates and fees that generate all revenues to cover expenditures.
All expenditures related to day-to-day operations of the town come from the General Fund. Capital projects, such as the construction of roads, parks, and other public facilities, are also budgeted with General Fund dollars. Any expenses related to the maintenance and operation of water, sewer, and electric services come not from the General Fund, but instead from their respective Utility Funds. The Town’s 21 General Fund departments and divisions can be grouped into the following six primary function areas:
- Public Safety: 33%
- General Government: $13%
- Economic & Physical Development: 15%
- Transportation: 11%
- Debt Service: 10%
- Cultural & Recreation: 10%
- Environmental Protection: 8%
The town’s fund balance is much like a savings account, as compared to a household budget. If the town brings in more revenues than expected or spends less than the budgeted expenditures, then at the end of a budget year these differences, or extra funds, become part of this savings account that constitutes the fund balance.
The North Carolina Local Government Commission requires all North Carolina municipalities to maintain at least 8% of 1 year’s general fund operating expenses in their Fund Balance. The town’s policy is to maintain that ratio at 25% as a minimum. From time to time, the Town will use money from fund balance to cover one-time expenses such as specific capital items. The Town evaluates any decision to use fund balance carefully and often plans the use in advance to ensure adherence to the Town’s fund balance policy.
The FY21-22 Recommended Budget includes a fund balance allocation of $1,549,000. This amount includes $649,000 for a fire engine replacement, $400,000 for Tunstall House Restoration, and $500,000 for the Downtown Alley Improvement project.
It is important to maintain a healthy fund balance. Bond Rating Agencies analyze a municipality’s practice of fund balance usage and adherence to their fund balance policy. These agencies have been quite pleased with Apex’s fund balance maintenance:
- Standard and Poor’s rates Apex as AAA (the highest possible rating)
- Moody’s rating is Aaa (the highest possible rating)
These ratings allow the town to borrow money at the most favorable interest rates.